Sasaki Hideto & Sekine Toshiyuki Quartet +1

Stop Over

BBE Records • 2020

Pianist and jazz specialist Toshiyuki Sekine was just 20 years old when he sat down in the studio with trumpeter Hideto Sasaki, dimmed the lights to a crackling mood – and played the most heartbreaking hard bop beyond Hokkaidō on the tape. The two pressed 100 records in 1976. Understatement in Japanese. After all, that was just enough to check this thing out to friends and family. Afterwards the record was long lost. One of the few went on discogs for 1,000 EUR over a year ago. Tony Higgins and Mike Peden also thought, that’s too much money. The two universal-jazzists, on behalf of the label BBE, established contact to Japan, found »Stop Over« on original tapes and put the pen in the hand of 64-year-old Sekine. To sign the contract for the reissue – and write the liner notes for the record. If you are familiar with BBE’s »J-Jazz« compilations, you might know the hard bop number of »Deep Modern Jazz From Japan 1969-1983 Vol.2«. At the tempo the two of them set on it, cherry blossoms are already sprouting between Kagoshima and Sapporo in February. But Sasaki Hideto and Sekine Toshiyuki have also gone into driving water, where Art Blakey spreads the sweat on the snare drum. With cover versions of the legendary Bobby Hutcherson (»Little B’s Poem«) and the cigar-in-deep-leather armchair-smoking »Soultrane« by bebop pioneer Tadd Dameron, Sekine and Sasaki are sailing East Coast jazz across the Pacific. Into the metropolis of Tokyo, out into the world.